Growers demand more cold storage units to maintain supply-demand chain
SRINAGAR: For the very first time, plums are being kept in cold storage units in Kashmir even as growers demand more cold storage units in the valley.
Growers from different areas of Kashmir told that due to floods in different parts of India, they were unable to send their produce outside J&K.
They said that plum has very little shelf life and gets damaged in just a week or two so there was no option for growers other than to keep them in cold storage units.
Shahid Ahmad, a plum grower from Shopian told that he had around 1000 crates of plum and bought more than 2000 crates more but due to continuous rains in North India, he wasn’t in position to send his produce outside.
“If there wouldn’t have been cold storage units available, I would have suffered loss in crores,” he said, adding that he kept his produce in cold storage units and can sell it now anytime.
Growers said that there is a need for more cold storage units so that growers can keep their produce there and sell it as per demand.
They said that it will help in maintaining supply-demand chain and growers will handsome gains besides that it will generate employment opportunities for youth.
Azhar Anjum, Manager of one of the cold storage units, said that cold storage units have come in handy for Kashmiri fruit growers who witnessed a very low demand for the fruit despite bumper crops last season.
He said that cold storage units are very beneficial as it increases the shelf life of fruit by months and helps in maintaining the chain of supply and demand.
He said the cold storages have “revolutionised” the horticulture sector as it gives a choice to a grower to sell his produce “as per will”.
Though the number of cold storage units is still very less and can store just little produce but main thing growers need to do is to focus on smart packing and grading, he said.
He said that plums were first time cold stored this year and growers are very happy to sell plum as per their will now.
As first time plum were cold stored, we had to research a bit so that produce can be kept well and growers won’t face any kind of inconvenience, he added—(KNO)